Viet Nam asserts right to sovereignty over islands

HA NOI — Viet Nam has unquestionable sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos, said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Phan Thuy Thanh.

She was commenting on China’s imposition of a ban on fishing in the East Sea area from June 1 to August 1.

"Any activity by foreign countries regarding the Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos, as well as Viet Nam’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf, without the consent of the Vietnamese Government is a violation of Viet Nam’s sovereignty and its sovereignty rights in these areas," Thanh reiterated last Friday.

She added Viet Nam had sufficient historical evidence and a legal base to confirm its indisputable sovereignty over the islands.

As a coastal country, Viet Nam had sovereign rights over its exclusive economic zone and its continental shelf, according to the rules of international laws, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

She said Viet Nam would look to solve disputes through peaceful negotiations on the basis of respect to international laws such as the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the 1992 Manila Declaration on the East Sea, and the Declaration on Code of Conduct between Parties in the East Sea signed by ASEAN and China last year

While actively promoting peaceful negotiations to reach basic and durable solutions for disputes, all involved parties should respect the status quo and refrain from actions that would further complicate the situation, Thanh said. — VNS